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HOK Forward: Design in the Digital Age

Websites, social media and TV networks have given the world 24-7 access to design inspiration. HOK's workplace strategists and designers set out to explore the effects—both positive and negative—of this elevated interest in design across six broad topics.

In this issue of HOK Forward:

The team takes on aesthetics, outlining a rigorous process for achieving authentic interior design rather than simply chasing trends.

The influencer culture is here. Christine Vandover writes about designing under the influence, postulating that the most thoughtfully designed spaces eschew outside influences—and noting the radical changes affecting influencers since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Caitlin Turner and Kristina Kamenar delve into stylization, clarifying what they believe is the most misunderstood term in interior design and explaining how it can lead to a “return to joy.”

Globalization has made the world a more connected place, where ideas and inspiration are shared and accessible. But Enrico Caruso and Julia Cooper argue that it doesn’t mean all workplaces should look the same.

What’s the anatomy of an authentic experience? Peter Sloan and Bethany Foss asked the world via a survey, and 500+ respondents helped them deconstruct it. Here they crystallize their quantitative and qualitative findings into lessons all workplace designers can use.

Finally, Mike Goetz examines personalization in offices: What does it mean, why do people do it, what does it look like, how can designers facilitate it, and how are technology, demographics and COVID-19 changing it?

The team’s biggest finding? Great design doesn’t emerge from a well-curated Pinterest board or binge watching a home design show. Instead, it’s the product of education and experience, inspiration and rigor.



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